Re: Technical Writing Defined At Last

Subject: Re: Technical Writing Defined At Last
From: "Martin, Chuck" <chuckm -at- EVOLVESOFTWARE -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 10 Dec 1997 10:38:44 -0800

While I appreciate the attempt, I think the definition is rather
limited. I suppose that's because my experience has shown me that what
we do is far more than write. Among the tasks I have done in recent

- coded macros
- designed and evaluated interfaces
- read product code
- designed Help systems (look, feel, and navigation)
-created and edited document templates
- tested software
and of course
- wrote

One thing I tell people to explain what I do is to say that I'm a
translator, that I translate from enginerring-ese to plain English (fill
in your favorite language here). That covers a lot of ground, more in
the realm of total communication rather than just writing.

That said, it is great to try and come up with a concise, understandable
definition that covers us all.

On Wednesday, December 10, 1997 9:11 AM, DURL [SMTP:durl -at- BUFFNET -dot- NET]
> How does this strike you as a definition of technical writing
> (remember writing?!)? I want a definition to explain what technical
> writing is, and what we do, when I give
> presentations. Here it is <drum roll>:
> Technical writing has two parts. (1) The process is writing
> information provided/generated/developed by
> specialists for use by either the general public or by another group
> specialists with a different area or level of expertise than the
> specialists AND (2) The product is documentation that no one (or very
> would read by choice.

"You don't look American."
"Everyone looks American, because Americans are from everywhere."

- Doonesbury
Chuck Martin, Technical Writer
Evolve Software | Personal
chuckm -at- evolvesoftware -dot- com | writer -at- grin -dot- net |, or

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